Blue Dragons sweep series with Broncbusters

GCCC Sports Information Services
Garden City Community College's Tyler Barth leads off first base as Hutchinson's Josh Mitchell makes a pitch Saturday in the second game of a doubleheader at Williams Stadium.

Offense has been hard to come by for Chris Finengan's team at times this season. Game three was no exception.

Ben McLaughlin and Austin Callahan homered, Caden Pogue allowed just two hits, and Hutchinson blasted Garden City Community College, 11-1, Saturday afternoon at Williams Stadium.

The only thing the Broncbusters could muster in this one was a Michael Wright single in the first and a Geoff Marlow solo homer in the fourth. Other than that, it wasn't pretty. Their last six batters were retired in order, and they produced just four baserunners all day.

Meantime the Blue Dragons had no problems with the sticks. An error coupled with Jack Torosian's two-run single put Hutchinson up 3-0 in the first. After Mason Lowe's RBI single made it 4-0 in the second, Callahan smashed a leadoff homer to begin the third. Cole Cosman followed later in the inning with a two-run double, and the visitors had a seven-run cushion.

The Broncbusters finally got on the board in the fourth when Marlow took Pogue deep to left. But that was the extent of Garden City's offense. The Blue Dragons got a run back in the fifth and then blew the game open on McLaughlin's three-run bomb in the sixth.

Pogue needed just 66 pitches to pick up his third win of the season for Hutchinson, which won their seventh straight game. He struck out four in a complete-game victory.

Michael Thorne dropped to 2-4 for Garden City, allowing eight runs on nine hits in 4.2 innings.

Game 4

Looking to salvage at least one game in their series with Hutchinson, the Broncbusters held a 3-1 lead going into the eighth in the finale. But untimely miscues cost them again, and the Blue Dragons seized control.

Mason Lowe and Austin Callahan each collected three hits and drove in a pair as Hutchinson erased a late two-run deficit to complete the sweep of Garden City, 9-3 Saturday afternoon at Williams Stadium. The Blue Dragons won their eighth straight contest while the Broncbusters lost for the fifth consecutive time.

The unfortunate thing about this game was that Garden City was in firm command going into the final two innings. Sage McMinn and Raul Garcia got the Broncbusters through six, and Jake Gimbel pushed them out of trouble in the seventh. But that two-run lead dissipated in the eighth when Gimbel allowed a leadoff single to Cole Cosman; then watched helplessly as Lowe reached based on a dropped third strike that scored a run from third. Two batters later, Callahan sent a mile-hop popup on the right side of the infield that Ryan Muniz lost in the sun, allowing the tying run to come around. That was followed by an error on Nico Vite that gave Hutchinson their first lead of the game. They added three more runs, the last two coming on a passed ball and an error that gave the road team a four-run cushion.  

The shellshocked Broncbusters never recovered.

Lowe smashed an RBI double down the left-field line in the ninth, and Callahan smoke a run-scoring base hit to make it 9-3.

The last two innings spoiled a solid start from Garden City, which took an early 2-0 edge on Geoff Marlow's two-run extra base hit in the second. They scored their third in the fourth when Kyle Jameson sprinted home on a passed ball. But the Broncbuster bats went cold the rest of the way, producing just three hits over the final five innings.

Gimbel dropped to 0-2 on the bump this year, allowing five runs on two hits in 1.1 innings. McMinn, who started the game, yielded just one run on three hits, and struck out three.

Tyler Delong notched the win for Hutchinson, fanning five in three solid innings of relief.